Four-way valve relies on disc-shaped spring

June 16, 2005
It's common practice in the oil and gas industry to inject a drive gas or fluid into a well and then release it into the atmosphere once it has done its job.

But the industry is being required to recover these fluids and gases. To do so, engineers at Morrison Machine Works, Fort St. John, British Columbia, developed a four-way valve that controls two gas or fluid streams at once.

The requirements were daunting. The valve had to be mechanically activated because there is rarely electrical power at well sites. So it had to rely on existing pressure drops (differentials). The valve had to be bistable and could not let pressure equalize throughout the system. It would also have to be simple to operate and maintain, and provide a year of continuous service (5 million cycles).

The engineering team finally decided on using a bistable Clover disc spring from Schwab-Koplin Assoc., Port St. Lucie, Fla., to position the fourway valve's shuttle. A patented system of radial and axial seals allows low shuttle/spool shifting forces while maintaining a tight seal necessary to avoid pressure equalization. The design uses only three moving parts. The finished valve injects chemicals into a 1,200-psi pipeline using 5 psi of existing pressure drop and an intensification system.

Sponsored Recommendations

Pumps Push the Boundaries of Low Temperature Technology

June 14, 2024
As an integral part of cryotechnology, KNF pumps facilitate scientific advances in cryostats, allowing them to push temperature boundaries and approach absolute zero.

The entire spectrum of drive technology

June 5, 2024
Read exciting stories about all aspects of maxon drive technology in our magazine.


May 15, 2024
Production equipment is expensive and needs to be protected against input abnormalities such as voltage, current, frequency, and phase to stay online and in operation for the ...

Solenoid Valve Mechanics: Understanding Force Balance Equations

May 13, 2024
When evaluating a solenoid valve for a particular application, it is important to ensure that the valve can both remain in state and transition between its de-energized and fully...

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Machine Design, create an account today!